Every homesteader that cans on a regular basis knows that one of the expenses with canning that keeps recurring is the purchasing of canning lids. We can reuse the jars. We can reuse the bands but not the lids. Well, that was until now. Tattler came out with some reusable canning lids with rubber seals that can be washed and reused.
Now these lids didn't just come out. I believe they have actually been around for a few years. I had seen them in several magazines before I got curious enough to purchase a couple of boxes of regular and wide-mouth lids and rubber rings.
The advertisements say the plastic lids are BPA free and dishwasher safe. I have washed them by hand just becauase I like to keep all my canning stuff together and not wait till the dishwasher would get run. The box also says that they are "indefinitely reusable". These lids can be used with pressure canners, water bath and vacuum sealers.
For the most part the lids work the same as the disposible lids with just a few exceptions. With these lids you will have to take a small step back in time (not a big deal to most homesteaders that are pretty much doing that already) because these lids do not have the rubber ring as part of the lid it is a separate and reusable rubber ring.
Here is the exact instructions per the box............
- Inspect top of jar for cracks and nicks
- Wash, rinse and sterilize jars. Scald lids amd ribber rings. Leave in water until ready to use.
- Fill jars as indicated per canning instructions for that food type.
- Wipe top of jar after filling. Place lid and rubber ring combination on jar.
- Screw band on jar loosely. Center lid on jar and hold in place with finger while you finish tightening the metal band, THEN TURN BACK 1/4 inch. Product must be allowed to vent during processing.
- Process per instructions for various food.
- Tighten metal band firly immediately upon removal from canner! (very important step)
- Wehn jars have cooled, remove metal band and determine by feel if lids are securely sealed. Sealed jars may be stored without metal bands if desired.
- When removing lid gently insert table knife between rubber and jar to release seal - DO NOT use sharp knife.
- Wash plastic lids and ruber rings, rinse, dry and store for future use. Do not save any rubber ring which is cut or deformed.
Okay so that sums up the actual usage and now I will tell you how they worked for me. I have had 100 percent success using the lids for water canning. Each and every jar had an excellent seal.
When it came to pressure canning I had a failure of roughly one to two jars from each batch. I do not believe this failure was due to the product but rather my neglect in following the instructions 100 percent. I remembered to place the lids as instructed and to tighten the ring and then go back 1/4 inch. What I forgot to do every single time in both pressure canning and water canning was to tighten the metal bands immediately upon removing from the canner. I personally believe this is what caused the failure to seal on some of the jars, the bands were just too loose.
*****Update Note**** As of December 6, 2011 I have moved almost exclusively to Tattler Lids other than when I know I will be gifting what I am canning. I have not had a single sealing failure since I began tightening the bands after removing from the canner every single time. Perfect success! *****
I have had some of the jars with the Tattler lids on them sitting on the shelves for about a year now and the remain sealed until your pry them open with your butter knife.
I have had no problems with discoloration of the rings even when the canned item was tomato. I have not had to discard any of the rubber rings as of yet either. They wash nice and I dry them right away and then store them in the box they came in.
So what do I think of the Tattler Reusable canning lids? I love them. I really like the idea that I can always have some lids on hand and that once I open a jar I can wash that lid and rubber ring and just store it away to be used again. This really cuts down on the number of lids that I have to have stored in case lids become scarice again as they did in the past.
Cost wise they are more of an upfront investment but with what they are charging for disposible lids now you will recoup your money pretty quickly with just 4 or 5 uses. You get 3 dozen for just over 20.00 + shipping on Tattler's own website - www.reusablecanninglids.com
Just a tip - when I first started using them I was afraid I wouldn't get them to seal right and lose my whole batch of canning so I only used 2 or 3 Tattler lids and the rest were disposible. I did this several times until I felt comfortable with how to place the lids and had some success. They are worth the investment in my opinion.
Tomorrow is another canning day for me and I plan to use 100 percent Tattler lids on this canning day so I will keep you posted with my success.